Toyota has announced that the North American-market Lexus NX will be built in Canada starting in 2022.
Reuters reports that the automaker’s factory in Cambridge, Ontario will build both the NX and NX hybrid models following a series of investments totaling hundreds of millions of dollars from Toyota.
The current Lexus NX is built exclusively in Japan, and this move will mark the first time the striking crossover is built anywhere other than its home country. Based on the timeline provided by Toyota, it seems apparent that the Ontario plant won’t build the existing NX but either a facelifted model or its second-generation instead.
Speaking during a presentation with the president of Toyota’s Canadian unit, Fred Volf, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the move will help guarantee 8,000 jobs and the factory itself.
“We have preferential trade access to two-thirds of the global economy. In fact, we’re the only G7 country that has free trade deals with every other G7 country,” Trudeau said about the strength of Canada’s trade agreements.
Toyota is Canada’s largest automotive manufacturer, and the automotive sector is also the country’s largest export industry, supporting over 525,000 jobs. According to Trudeau, he first had discussions with Toyota chief executive Akio Toyoda to build the NX locally on April 1.
News about the premium compact SUV being built in Canada comes shortly after General Motors confirmed that it will shut its factory in Ontario by the end of 2019. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles hit the Canadian auto production industry with another blow in March, when it stated that a shift at its Windsor assembly plant would be cut, resulting in 1,500 job cuts.